April 14, 2012
Facebook Acquires TagTile, Unveils Social Shopping Program
The world's largest social network announced on Friday that they had acquired a San Francisco-based customer loyalty firm, and that they would be launching a way for small businesses to send promotional offers to users directly through the website's news feeds.
According to CNET News Executive Editor Paul Sloan, Facebook announced that they had purchased TagTile, a startup company that gives merchants a no-cost hardware device which customers can tap their phone on (provided they have already downloaded the TagTile mobile app) in order to receive coupons or other loyalty rewards.
"We´re happy to confirm that TagTile´s founders are joining Facebook, and that Facebook is acquiring substantially all of the company´s assets," the social media giant said in a statement released to the media, according to Jackie Cohen of All Facebook. "We´ve admired the engineering team´s efforts for some time now and we´re excited to have them join Facebook."
Likewise, in a statement posted to the company's homepage (and reprinted by Cohen), TagTile representatives said that Facebook was "acquiring substantially all of our assets. It´s a huge opportunity for us to take our goal -- helping businesses grow -- and do it on a much, much bigger scale than we could have on our own."
They added that they were "excited" about what the future holds for the company, and that while the company's program would continue to work as usual for the time being, that they would not be adding new customers and that "TagTile as it exists today won´t be part of what we do at Facebook."
Terms of the acquisition have not been released, according to reports.
The announcement came on the heels of the unveiling of Facebook Offers, which VentureBeat's Meghan Kelly wrote will be a way for members of the social media website to purchase deals through their news feeds, in a fashion not dissimilar to Groupon.
Kelly noted that it "remains to be seen" how (and even if) the TagTile acquisition will play a role in the Facebook Offers program.
Earlier on Friday, Charles Cooper of CNET reported that the beta version of Facebook Offers, which had recently gone live, allowed users to click on a "Get Offer" link that appeared in their feeds.
The offers would come from businesses that the individuals had already "liked" and would result in a coupon being sent to them via email or text message. A Facebook spokeswoman told Cooper that the program was only open to a few businesses in the U.S., Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and Turkey at this time.